I decided to go see The Hunger Games. Jeff read the book and wanted to see it. I checked with Meredith who said she thought the movie limited rather than sensationalized the human hunt, and since by the time I finished the book I felt like I was reading a movie script based on a video game, I decide to see what they did with it. I thought the movie improved on the book. I liked the casting in general, but I thought Woody Harrelson did an excellent job as Haymitch. Rather than being mostly vulgar and undependable as in the book, he added a human element. Cutting between the games and the game makers rather than having Katniss surmise what they are doing from the ground was much more effective in adding layers to the conflict between those in control and those who are their victims. Lastly, the thing I liked least about the book--the tributes returning as attack animals (it was not only sensationalistic and unrealistic but also disturbing without justification)--was handled much more reasonably. I'm not sorry I went, but this is still definitely PG-13. Don't take the kiddies.
One annoying thing about the movie is the camera work. They opted for videography instead of cinematography. I guess they were going for the amateur news footage look, but, hey, I can't tell what is going on in Syria when I see that amateur footage on TV--I don't want someone to try to tell me a story with it. Your eye never had time to settle on one thing. Thank goodness there were times when they gave it a rest.